Riviera owners in Sydney enjoyed every facet of the Riviera lifestyle as they celebrated Riviera's _Bling on Summer_ Christmas Party at one of Sydney's boating jewels, The Basin, located on the western foreshore of Pittwater.
Riviera 33 Open Flybridge owner Martin Shaw joined the convoy travelling from Sydney Harbour to The Basin on Friday, November 29.
A high wind warning of 20 to 30 knots and three metre swell would normally deter Martin from venturing outside the Harbour, but with the R Marine Sydney team on board a 445 SUV and other Riviera owners travelling in the fleet, Martin felt confident in his ability to navigate the conditions.
"It was really rough but the R Marine Sydney team on board the 445 SUV stuck with me the whole way and guided me with radio communication, which was very reassuring for me," he said.
"If it weren't for their guidance, I would have been terrified, but this experience was definitely one of the highlights of the weekend because it gave me the opportunity to brush up on my boat handling skills and to drive the boat like I have never driven it before, with one engine almost on idle and the other at full power – it certainly was an exhilarating experience."
Martin's partner Annette Tomlinson and their friend Susan O'Hare joined him on board for the weekend.
"It was a real adventure. The camaraderie of other Riviera owners was a major highlight, as was the large convoy of Rivieras travelling to the Royal Motor Yacht Club on the Saturday afternoon for the cocktail party and dinner.
"It was great to meet other Riviera owners, such as Greg Fullerton who was happy to share his boating knowledge with me. Another surprise was the limo transfers at the Yacht Club for the dinner, and the girls really enjoyed the ABBA band."
The weekend began with a visit from Santa who delivered special Riv gifts to each boat on Friday afternoon and then on the Saturday it was time for the 'French Riviera' themed activities with a Boules competition, Baguettes and chilled Beaujolais on the lawn.
At 3.30pm, the fleet of 25 boats travelled line astern to the Royal Motor Yacht Club Newport for the Christmas Party. Beginning with 'Champagne on the Dock' at 6pm before a fleet of stretched limousines escorted the 100 guests to the Yacht Club to celebrate in true Riviera style. A selection of fine wine, food and entertainment was enjoyed by all as they celebrated Riviera's _Bling on Summer_ Christmas Party.
Riviera 40 Open Flybridge owner Greg Fullerton and his wife, Tracy, travelled ahead of the convoy from Sydney to The Basin in conditions, which Greg described as 'moderately challenging'.
"The weather coming up from Sydney was a little choppy but that demonstrates the ability of the boat," he said.
"It was a great weekend. We really enjoyed the baguettes on the lawn and the tender service was greatly appreciated.
"The convoy of 25 boats from The Basin to the Royal Motor Yacht Club was a stunning sight and another highlight was seeing the Belize 54 Daybridge in all her glory with the covers lifted from the daybridge.
"I really make a point of going to all the New South Wales events because I find it is a great way to meet other Riviera enthusiasts.
"I enjoy talking about boats with other owners as I am always learning more about navigation, electronics, fuel efficiency and maintenance. It is a great opportunity to gain more education and knowledge about our boats and it was interesting chatting to Martin about his experience on the journey from Sydney Harbour to The Basin.
"I look forward to catching up with the Riviera Family at future events."
Both Martin and Greg look forward to spending time aboard over Christmas and the New Year.
Martin and Annette will spend Christmas on board and plan to travel as far north as they can manage, possibly to Port Stephens.
Greg's philosophy is 'if the sun is up, the propellers ought to be turning', so Greg and Tracy plan to spend many summer days aboard, including their annual Boxing Day voyage to watch the Sydney to Hobart race start.
Riviera wishes all its owners safe and happy boating over the Festive season.
Riviera offers 15 different models from 36 to 75 feet across three model series Flybridge, Sport Yacht and the new SUV collection.
In 2012 Riviera celebrated the launch of its 5000th boat, the 445 SUV, a significant achievement in the company's rich 33-year history.
Riviera also offers the bespoke Belize Motoryachts. Inspired by classic luxury details and timeless style, Belize Motoryachts has recently released the new 54 foot Sedan and Daybridge models.
For more information, please go to www.rivieraaustralia.com